A blog about current Christian songs that have strong, deep lyrics and can be used in contemporary or blended Christian Worship formats.

salvation

Hallelujah by Tenth Avenue North

Today’s strong worship song is “Hallelujah” by Tenth Avenue North. This song appeared on their Over and Underneath album. I would categorize “Hallelujah” as a praise song. The lyrics are neither  too repetitive nor shallow.  Man’s depravity and sin are acknowledged. Jesus emerges as the hero and is credited fully for our salvation. What also makes “Hallelujah” special is its use of expressions and pictures from the psalms like hiding in the shadow of God’s wings, God’s voice like thunder, and seeking God’s face.

Scripture references include Isaiah 53, Psalm 24, Psalm 27, Psalm 80, Psalm 17, Psalm 36, Psalm 57, Psalm 63,Matthew 12:20, Revelation 5:12, and Revelation 13:8.

 

“Hallelujah”

At first I am afraid but not because of fear
But the Holy of Holies is drawing me near
Your voice like thunder shakes the ground I’m onSo hide my face in the shadow of Your wings, oh Lord
Hide my sin from the beauty here before Your throne
Your throne

Hallelujah for the blood of the Lamb that was slain
Hallelujah for the blood of the Lamb that was slain
And so we enter in to see Your face, yeah
We enter in to see Your face, oh God

Well I’m falling to my knees. I feel the earth beneath
With the weight of my sin, and this crushing unbelief
Could You really love me with all that I’ve done, oh Lord

You spread Your hands
And made a refuge for the weak and blessed
The weary, bruised, and broken
Took our sin. Inside Your wounds we hide away
Inside Your wounds we hide

 

 

 

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Man of Sorrows by Hillsong United

Today’s strong worship song is Man of Sorrows by Hillsong United which was released on their Glorious Ruins album in July of 2013. The lyrics and the title are based on Isaiah 53 where God through Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would be “a man of sorrows, familiar with suffering.” This song reads and sings like a hymn. The lyrics accurately and powerfully connect Isaiah 53 to the passion accounts in the four Gospels where Jesus suffers and dies on the cross for the sins of the world. The lyrics focus on Christ and His work of atonement, redemption and reconciliation. He indeed reconciled the very ones who nailed him to the cross. He has done the same for us! The lyrics end with the empty tomb the proclamation of the resurrection of Jesus. “Hallelujah God be praised. He’s risen from the grave.” Lyrics do not get much stronger than this.

Scripture references include Isaiah 53, John 3:16, 1 John 2:2, 2 Corinthians 5:19, and John 8:36.

Man of sorrows Lamb of God
By His own betrayed
The sin of man and wrath of God
Has been on Jesus laid
Silent as He stood accused
Beaten mocked and scorned
Bowing to the Father’s will
He took a crown of thorns
Oh that rugged cross
My salvation
Where Your love poured out over me
Now my soul cries out
Hallelujah
Praise and honour unto Thee

Sent of heaven God’s own Son
To purchase and redeem
And reconcile the very ones
Who nailed Him to that tree

Now my debt is paid
It is paid in full
By the precious blood
That my Jesus spilled

Now the curse of sin
Has no hold on me
Whom the Son sets free
Oh is free indeed

See the stone is rolled away
Behold the empty tomb
Hallelujah God be praised
He’s risen from the grave

 

Made Alive by Citizens

Today’s Strong Worship Song is Made Alive by Citizens which was released in March of 2013.  I like the song for multiple reasons one of which is that it has an 80’s style which is what I grew up with in high school and college. By far, though what makes Make Alive strong are the lyrics. Made Alive presents bold  truth without apology.  We were by nature objects of wrath, dead in sin, alone and hopeless. God reached us in His love and kindness and made us alive in Christ.  God’s love and grace are amazing. Strong contrasts are in the lyrics as well — light vs darkness, death vs life, wrath vs mercy, etc. Simply put, the lyrics acknowledge all that God has done to make us alive.

Scripture references include Colossians 2:13, Ephesians 2:1, Romans 6:11, Romans 5:19, Romans 3:20-21, Ephesians 2:8-9, John 8:12, John 9:5, and  John 3:19.

Made Alive

I once was dead in sin
Alone and hopeless.
A child of wrath I walked
Condemned in darkness.

But Your mercy brought new life
And in Your love and kindness,
Raised me up with Christ
And made me righteous.

You have bought me back
With the riches of,
Your amazing grace
And relentless love.
I’m made alive forever,
With You, life forever
By Your grace I’m saved
(By Your grace I’m saved)

Lord, You are the light,
That broke the darkness.
You satisfy my soul,
When I am heartless.

If ever I forget
My true identity,
Show me who I am,
And help me to believe.

You have bought me back
With the riches of,
Your amazing grace
And relentless love.
I’m made alive forever,
With You, life forever
By Your grace I’m saved
(By Your grace I’m saved)

My sin has been erased,
I’ll never be the same.
My sin has been erased,
I’ll never be the same.

You have bought me back
With the riches of,
Your amazing grace
And relentless love.
I’m made alive forever,
With You, life forever
By Your grace I’m saved

You have bought me back
With the riches of,
Your amazing grace
And relentless love.
I’m made alive forever,
With You, life forever
By Your grace I’m saved
(By your grace I’m saved)


Sing by Josh Wilson

Today’s strong worship song is Josh Wilson’s Sing. I can not say enough about the lyrical strength of this song. Jesus meets us were we are in our sin and then rescues us from it. Jesus carried the curse of sin for the entire world in order to set us free from it. There is no greater reason for us to sing then knowing the hope that Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection brings to us. Another great feature of this song is that there is an alternate Verse 2 written for the Christmas season. We have sung this song several times at Lamb of God Lutheran and it has already become a favorite. We will be singing it for Christmas Eve. I need to thank my wife and son for insisting that I listen to Josh Wilson.

Scripture references include Galatians 3:13, Hebrews 13:5, Matthew 28:20, Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:23, 1 John 2:2, Matthew 2:2.

Sing

Verse 1

Ev’ry bit of history, and ev’ry single breath we breathe
Has led us here and brought us to our knees
From carrying the curse we bear, and praying that He’s
heard our prayers to set us free, oh, set us free

Pre-Chorus
‘Cause we could never get back home with broken hearts
so home has come to meet us where we are

Chorus
So sing that God is with us, sing
He has come to save us, sing
He will never leave us
Glory in the highest! Ev’rybody sing
To the Child who is our King
He has come to bring redemption to us
God is with us

Glory in the highest! Ev’rybody sing

Verse 2 (non-Christmas version)

We have found our hope again
In the Son of God and Son of Man
This Savior King is changing all we know
By carrying the curse we bear
For everybody everywhere
He lived and died and brought us life
And we will rise to meet Him in the sky

Verse 2 (Christmas version)
For He is born in Bethlehem, the Son of God and Son of man
This little Child is changing all we know
By carrying the curse we bear, for ev’rybody ev’rywhere
And He would someday die to bring us life
and we will rise to meet Him in the sky

Bridge
Jesus, Jesus, in a manger lay with the world to save
Jesus, Jesus, in a manger lay with the world to save
‘Cause we could never get back home with broken hearts
So, home has come to us

So Home has come to meet us where we are

Chorus (congregation may sing)
So sing, God is with us
Sing, He has come to save us
Sing, He will never leave us
Glory in the highest, everybody sing
To the One who is our King
He has come to bring redemption to us

God is with us
Glory in the highest, everybody sing

We have found our hope again
In the Son of God and Son of Man
This Savior King is changing all we know
By carrying the curse we bear
For everybody everywhere
He lived and died and brought us life
And we will rise to meet Him in the sky

Repeat chorus (congregation sing)

Jesus, Jesus, our Emmanuel
God is with us now

Jesus, Jesus, our Emmanuel
God is with us now


You Are My World by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite

Today’s strong worship song is You Are My World by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite as played by the CrossWalk band in Phoenix, AZ. The song is featured on their first ever album called Acoustics which can be purchased on iTunes. I personally know the song writers and absolutely love what they are doing. Please support them by downloading their album. The songs are all original songs and are written with strong lyrics in mind from the start. You are My World was written especially for CrossWalk‘s 5th Anniversary. It is a song of praise giving God full credit for all of the blessings they have as a relatively new congregation. They lyrics correctly proclaim God as the source of all good things. They lyrics also point to our depravity because of sin and the amazing love and grace of God to put our lives back together in Christ.

Bible references include 1 John 2:2, 2 Corinthians 4:7, 1 John 4:8, John 3:16, Psalm 31:10, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, and Ephesians 2:8-9.

You are My World

Life has brought me down

I feel like I am lost and can’t be found
And when I’ve given up You’re still around
You pull me up

Take this broken clay
Restore it back to life to work today
Because of all Your goodness I will say
Your Name be praised

And in all of this You show

You are grace, You are love
You’re an everlasting Savior
I am weak but You are strong
And I will praise Your Name forever
Praise Your Name forever
You are my world
You are my world

How could I pretend
That any of my works could ever mend
A love for me so great You chose to send
Your only Son

Your love is full and free
And Jesus’ sacrifice has covered me
You’ve given me a life eternally
By grace alone

And in all of this I see

I am finally free
By what You’ve given for me
I’ll be with You for eternity
When I look to the cross I see

Words & Music by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite. © 2012 CrossWalk Lutheran Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.


Promises by Sanctus Real

Today’s strong worship song is the new song Promises by the group Sanctus Real. It is so new that it hasn’t been released yet. The official release date is October 9, 2012. The writers of this song are Matt Hammitt, Chris Rohman, Mark Graalman and Pete Provost. I like this song because it is both real life and real comfort for those living in real life. In this broken world real life means facing unexpected trouble.  In the midst of trouble we may not know what to pray or where to go. The lyrics point us in the right direction, to the Word of God and to the promises of God.

The sound quality on the YouTube video is not the greatest. I will update this post when clearer ones are available.

Scripture references include Romans 10:17, John 17:17, Romans 8:28, Jeremiah 31:3, Romans 3:3, Hebrews 11:1, Romans 8:38-39, and Psalm 145:13.

Sometimes it’s hard to keep believing In what you can’t see
That everything happens for a reason
Even the worst life brings
If you’re reaching for an answer
And you don’t know what to pray
Just open up the pages Let His word be your strength
And hold on to the promises (Hold tight)
Hold on to the promises (Alright)
Jesus is alive so hold tight Hold on to the promises
All things work for the good Of those who love God
He holds back nothing that will heal you
Not even His own Son
His love is everlasting
His faithfulness unending
Oh, if God is for us who can be against us
So if you feel weak Neither life, nor death
Could separate us From the eternal love
Of our God who saves us


What a Savior – Laura Story

Today’s strong worship song is What a Savior by Laura Story which came out in 2009. The lyrics are very strong and incorporate all of the elements that I look for in a strong contemporary song. It is a song of praise to Jesus, our hero who by his mercy saved us from the depravity of our sin through His atoning sacrifice. He, the Beginning and the End (God) took our sin and shame on his shoulders!  Hallelujah, what a Savior. I also appreciate Laura Story’s God-given faith shining through her songs.

Scriptural references include Psalm 43:4, 1 John 2:2, John 14:6, Psalms 23, John 10, Revelation 22:13, Revelation 21:6, Philippians 2:9, and  John 15:15

What a Savior

Atoning Sacrifice
Keeper of this life
Hallelujah You are savior
Beginning and the end
Forgiver of my sin
By Your mercy You have saved us

Jesus You are stronger
More than any other
Hallelujah what a savior

Jesus You are higher
My soul’s deepest desire
Hallelujah what a savior

You are the shepherd king
You lead us by still waters
Hallelujah You are savior

You are my only hope
Your kindness is my friend
In Your presence You restore us

You are the way the truth and the life
You are my joy and salvation
Stood in my place taking my shame
Upon your shoulder

Jesus You are stronger
More than any other
Hallelujah what a savior

Jesus You are higher
My soul’s deepest desire
Hallelujah what a savior